Celebrate Chinese New year with this gluten free, butter free and easy to make Almond Cookie.
This Almond Cookie is 100% gluten free, easy to make and uses only very few ingredients, 8 actually. Great for everyday cookie, holiday cookie or if you celebrate or have a friend celebrating Chinese New Year, this is a nice cookie to serve for dessert.
I love desserts that are made from Almond, especially if it is as easy and simple as this one. I made this cookie several times, substituting some ingredients, adding different flavoring, coating the cookie with sliced Almond and even coating it with icing sugar. They all came out delicious although they somewhat look different. This version is just Vanilla Almond Cookie with part raw Almonds and mostly store-bought Almond Flour.
Ingredients for Gluten Free Almond Cookie
- Raw Almonds – the raw Almond gave the cookie a nice light crumbly texture and intense Almond flavor. This can be substituted with same amount of Almond Meal/Flour.
- Almond Meal/Flour – the recipes use 3/4 cup of Almond flour which serves as the main base ingredient.
- Icing Sugar – to sweeten the cookie. The fine texture of the icing sugar is best I give a smoother cookie plus it dissolves better since there is no creaming involve in this recipe.
- Egg White – Have it in room temperature so it makes it easy to whisk. This is even more important if you are doing it manually. this serves as the binder that will bring the dry ingredients together. It also gave the chewy texture to the cookie.
- Vanilla Extract – for flavoring. Can be substituted with Rose water, lemon zest, or orange zest.
- Salt – to enhance the flavor of the cookie.
Can I Replace Raw Almonds with Almond Flour?
Definitely. If you want to make the process simpler, you can use store-bought Almond Meal instead part raw Almonds. This means you will use 1 cup in total, and you will remove the raw Almonds portion. The difference will lie in the texture of the cookie. The cookie with part raw Almond and Almond Flour have a more grainy loose and light texture, and it also have a more intense Almond Flavor. The cookie that uses Almond Flour 100% is more compact and dense. I personally like the combination of both. Although it requires additional step of blanching the Almond and peeling skin, toasting and grinding I thinks it’s worth doing it. You can also use all raw Almonds although that would require more time peeling the skin. If you can find a blanch Almond, that would be the easier way to go for. You just have grind it in the processor. If you do have a chopper or a food processor, then just use Almond Flour which is the easiest war to go.
How to Make Gluten Free Almond Cookie
This recipe can be made with or without hand mixer. You will start differently depending if you are using part raw Almonds and part Almond Meal as opposed to using all Almond meal flour. Since this recipe uses combination of both let us start the process by working on our raw Almonds and turning it to ground Almond or homemade Almond Meal.
- Prepare the Raw Almonds: The raw Almond in this recipe is only 1/4 cup but it does give a nice texture to the cookie. Grinding your own Almonds will give a more intense Almond flavor and nice texture to the cookie. It will be less dense and compact as when using 100% store-bought All Almond Meal. Start by soaking the raw Almond in HOT water. It has to be boiling hot water so that it soften the skin better. If the water is not too hot, the skin will still cling to the Almond and removing it will be difficult. Soak it for about 20 minutes, then drain the water and dry the Almond with paper towel. Start removing the skin, if soaked properly, the skin should come off easily. Once done, toast the Almond until fragrant. You can toast it in a pan on stove top or in oven toaster. Once toasted, time to grind the toasted blanch Almond. I used my mini food chopper to do this. The time consuming part here is the peeling of the skin, this is why I only use 1/4 cup for the raw Almonds, just enough to give texture to the cookie. If you can find blanch Almond, that would be better. All you have to do is to toast and grind it. Now if you want the easiest way, that would be to use store-bought Almond Meal Flour.
- Sift Dry Ingredients: Since we are using mostly Almond Meal and icing sugar, it is recommended to sift them before using. This removes the lumps that are normal for these ingredients. You do not have to sift the raw ground Almonds.
- Whisk the Egg White until soft peaks. I used hand-mixer but this can be done manually. Use a wire whisk to do it.
- Once we have all the main elements ready, it is now time to mix them all together. Add the egg white to the dry ingredients and mix until it forms into a sticky thick paste. As simple as that, you have now a cookie batter ready for baking. Divide and arrange it in baking sheet. Top each piece with raw Almond.
- Bake at 350F for 15 – 18 minutes, the side will turn slightly brown while the cookie is still pale in color.
What if I Do Not Have Hand-Mixer?
Do not worry, you can still make this recipe even without hand-mixer. Use a wire whisk and manually whisk the egg white. It will take longer but as long as you get it to soft peaks, or even before soft peaks when it is bubbly, that should be ok. Some recipe even use the egg white as is, with just a slight whisking using a fork.
How to Make Homemade Almond Meal
I always prefer using the mostly ready to use Almond Meal because it makes this recipe easier to make. However, if you want to make you own Almond Meal and use 100% homemade ground Almond for this recipe you can definitely do that. Here is how you can make it. Also, watch the video to see how I did this for a small portion for this recipe.
- Soak 1 1/3 cups of raw Almonds in boiling water for 20 minutes. Make sure that the water is really hot, this will make the removal of the Almond skin easier. Once grounded, measure 1 cup for use in the recipe. If you ended up getting less, blanch another 1/4 cup of Almonds, or set aside the excess if any.
- Alternatively, if you are using already blanch Almond (skin off), you can skip steps 1 & 2 and start with step 3.
- Remove the skin of the Almonds.
- Toast the Almonds for about 5 – 10 minutes in the toaster or you can toast it in a frying pan on stove top.
- Cool: Let cool completely
- Grind in a food processor or food chopper. Aim for 3/4 cup fine texture and 1/4 cup slightly coarse texture.
- 3/4 cup Almond Meal Flour
- 1/4 cup Raw Almond or Blanch Almond (skin off)
- 1/4 cup + 1 Tablespoon Icing Sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
- 1 Egg White – room temperature (leave on the counter for 30 minutes before using)
- 1/4 teaspoon Salt
- 1/2 teaspoon Baking Powder
- 12 pieces Whole Almonds
- Raw Almond can be substituted with store-bought Almond Meal / Flour with same measurement. It should be 1 cup. You can find it normally in the Organic section or baking section.
- Almond Meal Flour – can be substituted by homemade ground Almonds with same measurement. Measure after grinding the Almond. It should be 1 cup.
- Vanilla Extract can be substituted with Lemon or Orange zest, or rose water, or more Almond Extract
- Preheat oven to 350F/180C .Place non-stick baking paper in a baking sheet or use a silicone mat. Set aside.
- If using part raw Almonds: Soak the raw Almonds in HOT water for about 20 minutes. Hot water soften the skin of the Almond and will make the removal easier. Remove the water and dry the Almonds with paper towel. Peel the skin of the Almonds. You will end up with a blanch Almonds. Transfer the blanch Almond in pan and toast on stove top until fragrant, about 15 minutes. Cool completely then grind using food chopper or food processor if making a large batch. You now have a homemade Almond Meal ready to use for this recipe.
- Alternatively, you can also toast the Almond in the toaster. Transfer the blanch Almond in a toasting pan and toast in oven toaster for 10 – 15 minutes or until fragrant.
- Dry Ingredients: Sift the icing sugar, salt, baking powder and Almond Meal. Add the 1/4 cup homemade ground Almond (from step 2) and mix to combine.
- Beat the Egg white until soft peaks.
- Dry Ingredients + Egg White: Create a well in the center of the dry ingredients mixture and add the beaten egg white. Mix until the mixture forms into a thick sticky paste. Meanwhile, grease your hand with oil to lessen the sticking of the dough to your hands.
- Divide the cookie batter into 12 portion, about 1 tablespoon each piece. Roll into your palm to form a ball, it doesn’t have to be perfect. Push 1 raw Almond in the center of each ball.
- Place the balls onto baking paper-lined oven tray or silicone mat, spaces 2-inch apart.
- Bake for 15 minutes or until the sides are lightly browned and the cookie do not stick to the tray anymore when you lift it. Let sit for 10 minutes in the baking try before transferring in a cooling rack.
- Cool on racks. Store in an airtight container for up to a week.
Makes 12 pieces
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